GREENEVILLE, Tenn. --- The Tusculum University women's volleyball team went toe-to-toe against the nationally-ranked Wingate Bulldogs in an intense conference match on Saturday afternoon in Pioneer Arena.
The Bulldogs (18-0, 11-0 SAC) won by scores of 25-22, 25-21, 21-25, 25-19 to overcome the Pioneers (8-8, 6-5 SAC). The third set win by Tusculum was only the second SAC set lost by Wingate and fourth set overall.
Wingate was led offensively by Sophie Schaff and Anne Abernathy, who finished with 15 and 13 kills, respectively. Shannon Kasprak was the main setter, dishing out 23 assists, while Rachel Alles collected 16. Treslyn Ortiz headed up the service aces (2) and dig category (19) for the Bulldogs. Schaff and Alles made an impact at the net with five and four total blocks, respectively.
For the Pioneers, Emiah Burrowes and Carli Pigza led the offense with 11 kills each. All three setters saw action in the match. Elise Carmichael collected 25 assists, Catherine Clingan notched 11, and Alyssa Rojas earned three. Carmichael and libero Carly Sosnowski each tallied a pair of aces, with four other Pioneers contributing to the effort. Sosnowski excelled from the back row, scooping up 16 digs, while Gabby Gray is credited with 13. Taylor Blythe guided the defense with her three solo blocks and one block assist.
Wingate finished the match with a .128 hitting percentage with 49 kills, 28 attack errors, and 164 total attempts. TU tallied 43 kills, 29 errors, and 168 attacks for a .083 hitting percentage. The Bulldogs led the Pioneers in assists (45-42), digs (70-69), and total team blocks (13-6). The home team collected eight aces, while the visitors notched four.
Tusculum will begin a five-match conference road trip, beginning Friday the 18th at Queens.